Colin Clydesdale is asking hospitality businesses across Scotland and beyond to show just how many jobs are at risk at their venues due to lockdown restrictions put in place across Scotland and potentially in the north of England.
The restaurateur recently posted a picture on Twitter of his staff in front of a blackboard outside his restaurant that reads ‘Nicola, there are 75 jobs here’.
“We are real people, hospitality is not just a job for us, it’s our way of life. We need clarity and support to help us keep going. Stay safe - UB Chip Team,” he says in the post.
Clydesdale is encouraging fellow businesses to follow suit to demonstrate the huge loss of jobs in hospitality that could arise from the new restrictions.
“By putting a board outside every single café, coffee shop, pub, restaurant, whether it’s Michelin starred or Nando’s, people will realise it’s real in every single street they go,” he says.
“It’s a 10-minute job. Everyone’s got a blackboard and if not, they can put an A4 piece of paper on their doors. It’s simple to do, and it’s about the people who work in these places.”
Earlier this week First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced that hospitality businesses in central Scotland will close for 16 days from today (9 October), with licensed premises across the rest of the country temporarily banned from selling alcohol indoors.
“We thought the Scottish Government would do one of two things,” says Clydesdale. “Take away our ability to sell alcohol and limit opening hours to 6pm, or shut us completely. What [Nicola Sturgeon] actually did was both, so the central belt is shut and the rest of the country has been turned into a giant café.”
“We haven’t traded properly for most of the year. Furlough runs out in three weeks and that’s Armageddon – if we are still shut then people are facing huge job losses across the country. For people to not understand the enormity of that is in my view not acceptable.”